A positive online reputation can boost businesses & contribute to their success.
With the steady growth & advancement of social media as well as the internet, it has become easier for people to communicate their thoughts & experiences about a product, service, or individual. This means that it is a vital necessity for individuals & organizations to be aware of their online presence & take steps to build & maintain a positive reputation.
Creating & keeping a positive online reputation takes time & consistent effort. It may not yield immediate results, but the benefits that come with it make the journey worth it.
In this post, we will break the process into two categories & list some strategies that will help in accomplishing it.
I – How to build a positive online reputation
II – Tips on maintaining a positive online reputation
How to build a positive online reputation
Proper & effective online or web monitoring can greatly impact the success of building & maintaining a positive reputation for a brand. By regularly monitoring your digital presence, you can keep track of what people are buzzing about your brand, products, or services. This way, you can swiftly address any unfavorable comments or feedback including misinformation or fake news.
Also, keeping an eye on your online presence can help in identifying areas for improvements, opportunities & industry trends that may be useful in building a positive online reputation & in furthering your business objectives.
Your website serves as the online equivalent of a business card, providing key information about your company such as your name, address & contact information. It is important to carefully consider the overall design and content of your website to ensure it makes a positive impression on visitors.
Starting with a distinct & concise domain name, often the name of your brand is key. Then, focus on the design of your homepage, keeping it visually appealing & easy to navigate.
Include clear and straightforward text & use appropriate graphics or images. A web design project plan can help guide the creation of an optimal visitor & customer experience on your website.
Include detailed information in dedicated sections, such as “about” & “contact” pages. The “about” page should include a description of your company & images of your notable achievements. The “contact” page should have your address, phone number, email & a map with driving directions.
Additionally, having a section for customer reviews & feedback can be beneficial to show the reliability of your company.
Potential clients often turn to social media platforms like Facebook to research restaurants, hotels & advertising agencies before making a decision. Having a presence on multiple social media channels can definitely boost your company’s reputation.
To engage your followers, post interesting & entertaining content on your fan page. You can opt to unveil information about new products or share links to articles on your website via Facebook or Twitter.
Now, to connect with professionals in your field, create a company account on LinkedIn. Some industries, such as design, use Pinterest as a source of inspiration, so if you offer furniture or wallpaper, it may be beneficial to post pictures of your products there.
In every social media account you have, make an effort to respond to comments, re-pin others’ content & show interest in others’ posts. Building relationships on social media can benefit your business in the future.
It is paramount to demonstrate to current or potential clients that your business is approachable and that you treat customers with respect. One way to do this is by responding to every online message or review in a timely manner.
If a comment is negative, respond politely and empathetically to diffuse any potential conflict and mitigate the spread of negative opinions. Positive comments should also be acknowledged and shared on your social media profiles, as they serve as a testament to the quality of your services or products.
When responding to messages, be sure to take the time to compose a thoughtful and well-written response. Keep in mind that responding impulsively can add more damage to an already problematic situation.
Most people take inspiration from the success of others & one way to chronicle that journey is through a blog.
A blog is an excellent platform to impart the values of your company & products & establish yourself as an expert in your field. Invest effort in avoiding language mistakes, using simple words & supplement your articles with creative infographics, charts & images.
Having a blog can increase brand awareness. The more people are aware of your brand, the more likely they are to consider purchasing your products.
Regularly publishing well-researched articles & sharing your knowledge, experiences & insights through a blog can also help position your company as an authority in your industry
In addition, having a blog can be an effective way to generate new leads through content marketing.
Consumers are always on the lookout for trustworthy brands & often conduct extensive research on a brand & its products before making a decision.
One way to build trust is by showcasing the positive experiences of others, such as displaying awards or customer testimonials. Customers are more likely to trust brands that have a proven track record & have received recognition, as they believe it will translate to success in their own projects.
There are various tools available that can assist in managing & displaying customer reviews about your brand. Positive reviews & recommendations can also be shared on social media profiles, thus increasing trust & credibility.
When creating content for your website, blog, social media accounts & other online platforms, it is important to use clear and simple language. Publish a post that is highly relevant & relatable.
Additionally, you can use a catchy title for your post to help in grabbing the attention or bring up the curiosity of your audience.
Tips on maintaining a positive online reputation
Acknowledging flaws is a hard pill to swallow, but refusing to accept them can result in a more damaging outcome.
For instance, if a business is falling short of the customers’ expected turnaround or has a return policy that is not clearly communicated, this can lead to negative reviews & disappointment among customers in the long run.
Although businesses may feel that if they reveal these weaknesses, customers will not want to buy from them, practicing an honest and transparent approach has proved to be more effective.
For instance, a business can provide a disclaimer, or explain the company’s current status, hence there may be some delay in fulfillment. In short, setting the expectation is important & would be greatly appreciated by the customer.
Collecting a good amount of feedback is a key consideration for maintaining a positive online reputation. The more reviews & ratings a business or individual has, the more credible they appear to potential customers.
A high number of reviews indicates that a business is popular & well-established & that a significant number of people have had positive experiences with them. Also, a diverse range of reviews can help to show that a business is not artificially inflating its reputation, as it is hard to fake a large number of reviews from different people.
Furthermore, gathering a large number of reviews can also help to boost search engine rankings & visibility, making it easier for people to find your business online.
Receiving a negative review can be hurtful & discouraging for businesses, especially for small ones. However, if handled professionally & taken constructively, it can be used as leverage in enhancing your online reputation.
By engaging with the reviewer & building a personal connection, you can often turn the situation around. A polite response to a negative review can often lead to the reviewer giving your business another chance.
If you feel that you can resolve the customer’s concern, reach out to them privately to offer a resolution. Once the issue is resolved, kindly ask the customer to update their review.
Nevertheless, if a resolution is not possible, a short & courteous public response acknowledging the feedback & any steps taken to address it can earn trust & a second chance. Ultimately, your response will also be viewed by other potential customers, who will appreciate your professionalism & commitment to customer satisfaction.
Meet the Author
Anna Mosq is a social media marketer who has a passion for helping startups create a good online reputation and help them advance in their business goals. She is also a food enthusiast by heart and would often blog about it.